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Ottawa signs former Calder Cup champion Bannister

The Ottawa Senators, parent club of the AHL’s Binghamton Senators, announced today they have signed free-agent defenceman Drew Bannister to a one-year, two-way contract.

Bannister, 35, has played professionally in Europe for the past seven seasons, splitting time between teams in Finland, Germany and Russia. He last skated in an NHL contest in 2001-02, when he played one game for the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim.

A Calder Cup champion with Hartford in 2000, Bannister has played 147 games in the AHL, totaling 16 goals and 54 assists for 70 points. The 6-foot-2, 198-pound native of Belleville, Ont., has also appeared in 164 career NHL games for the Tampa Bay Lightning, Edmonton Oilers, New York Rangers and Anaheim, recording five goals and 20 assists while accumulating 161 penalty minutes. He has also skated in 12 post-season contests, all with Edmonton, during the 1996-97 season.

Bannister was drafted by the Lightning in the second round (26th overall) of the 1992 NHL Entry Draft.